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To the Honorable Judge Britton. Losing my dad has been the hardest thing I've ever had to deal with in my life. I miss him every day. It hurts me and my mom, and anyone who was ever lucky enough to have known him, but I also know that it also hurts Jeffery Augustine and his father. When my dad passed, I made a vow to honor his memory every single day. My dad didn't believe in an eye for an eye. He believed in forgiveness, and kindness and compassion. What happened was a terrible accident, but Jeffery's life doesn't need to be ruined. That's not what my dad would have wanted. It's not what me or my mom want. Fred Andrews believed in lifting up those around him and in second chances, and I'm asking you to do the same.
Archie

"Chapter Seventy-Eight: The Preppy Murders" is the second episode of the fifth season of Riverdale, and the seventy-eighth episode of the series overall.[2] It premiered on January 27, 2021.

Synopsis

GAME CHANGERBetty and Jughead's investigation into the auteur takes a twisted turn after receiving a call from Bret. Meanwhile, Archie is forced to make an impossible decision when the person responsible for his father's death needs his help. Elsewhere, Veronica and Hermosa come up with a plan to force Hiram into early retirement, and Cheryl makes a business move.[3]

Plot

SPOILERS AHEAD


Mary confronts Archie after finding him in his room, aggressively pummeling his punching bag. He claims that he’s still unwired about the prom and heads out for a late night run.

Bret calls Betty for a transfer

Betty and Jughead are awakened from their sleep by Bret, who informs them that he’s come across privileged information that the two of them would certainly be interested in. However, he’ll only talk in exchange for them getting him a transfer to solitary confinement.

Archie heads to his father’s grave. He can’t make sense of why the auteur would re-enact the Black Hood attack at Pop's Chock'lit Shoppe when his father had been nothing but kind to the town of Riverdale. He exclaims that it’s not right.

Jughead and Betty discover that Bret is dead

Betty and Jughead visit Bret at the Lodge Detention Center the following day as planned. However, they discover that he was killed in his cell last night and that his body was taken to the morgue.

After the bust that was prom and learning that Highsmith College has disbanded its cheerleading squad, Cheryl scolds Ms. Bell for ordering her a blue graduation robe as oppose to the crimson robe she deliberately asked for.

Vernonia tells Archie to play along

Archie joins his friends in the student lounge. Veronica greets him with a kiss and tells him to play along. Betty and Jughead ask where he has been. Archie explains that he’s been busy and that graduation hasn't been on his mind considering that he most likely won’t be graduating with them. Veronica then proceeds to guide Archie out into the hallway, where she explains that they must maintain the ruse of their relationship until after graduation. If people found out they broke up, then they’d be forced to either tell Jughead the truth about Archie and Betty or lie.

Cheryl tells Toni that she has family business to tend to

Toni approaches Cheryl at her locker after overhearing her run-in with Ms. Bell. Toni then apologizes for not going home with Cheryl after prom. Cheryl sympathizes, as she doesn't wish to make Toni choose between herself and family. Cheryl then tells Toni that she has Blossom family business to attend to.

Betty and Jughead stop by the coroner’s office, where Dr. Curdle Jr. has taken custody of Bret’s body. He informs the pair that not only were there multiple wounds to Bret’s abdomen but that his eyes were gouged out as well, leaving him horribly disfigured.

Hiram attacks Archie for cheating on Veronica

Hiram confronts Archie at the community center. He puts Archie in a headlock for cheating on Veronica with Betty and sarcastically asks what kind of man would do such a thing. He tells Archie that he’s a disgrace and snidely remarks that the "apple doesn’t fall far from the tree." Archie becomes enraged and charges towards Hiram, but Tom intervenes. Archie then kicks Hiram out of his gym.

Hermosa kills the Malloys

Hermosa questions if something is bothering Veronica while sitting at the bar. Veronica insists that she’s fine and heads out back to take out the trash, where she is confronted by the Malloys, who have come to avenge their father’s death. They hold Veronica at gunpoint and tell her to turn around. Veronica pleads with them to spare her. Just as they’re about to open fire, Hermosa kills the three of them with a pistol equipped with a silencer.

Jughead and Betty tell Charles that Bret is dead

Betty and Jughead meet with Charles back home and reveal that Bret was killed and left nearly unrecognizable. Betty points out that the Auteur left them a sign that said "God is watching" and then they found Bret with his eyes gouged out. She suspects that it’s connected, with the connection between the two being David, who Bret was selling videos to and is still missing. Charles suspects that David killed Bret because Bret was intending to reveal that he was the Auteur. With the right connections and money, Charles explains that one could easily put out a hit in prison.

Cheryl is turned down by the Blossom board

Cheryl has a video chat with the Blossom board of the trustees to discuss the future of the Blossom empire. She met with Governor Dooley, who pending their sign off, has agreed to purchase a portion of their land to declare it sanctuary ground for the wronged Uktena people. Cheryl proposes that they then take the money from the sale to rebuild and reopen the factory to rebrand Blossom maple syrup. However, Aunt Cricket and Cousin Fester have no desire to reopen the factory or help Cheryl in any way due to the fact that she killed Uncle Bedford.

The Lodge women plot to take over the business

Veronica and Hermosa inform Hermione that Hiram is back into his old mafioso ways, and his behavior is putting all them in danger. Veronica and Hermosa would like for Hermione to sell them her shares of Lodge Industries as well as provide them with a copy of Hiram’s little black book with his underworld contacts.

Charles calls Betty and Jughead to the Lodge cabin, where they find David’s body hanging from the rafters. Charles surmises that David was tying up loose ends by first killing Bret and then himself. David is wearing an owl mask with a note around his neck that reads: "God is watching." Betty questions if David was even suicidal. She remarks that it all rather feels too neat.

Mary asks Archie to consider writing a letter of leniency

Mary informs Archie of a call she just had with a defense lawyer for Fred’s hit-and-run case. The judge is preparing to make his decision, and the lawyer has reached out to them to see if they would be willing to make a statement asking the judge for leniency. However, Archie can’t bring himself to forgive the Augustines, as he still has nightmares about how his father died. Mary asks that he at least consider it.

Hiram confronts Hermosa and Veronica

Hiram reprimands Veronica and Hermosa after learning that they have scared off his associates with false threats about the FBI and taken control of Lodge Industries’ board. They tell their father that it’s time to retire and that his reign is done. Hiram explains that reverting back to his true nature has given him back his strength and stamina. Veronica retorts that this isn’t how medical science works. Nevertheless, Hiram says that all he needs to do business is his fists and his gun. He then orders them both to exit his office.

Jughead receives an acceptance notice, inviting him to the University of Iowa’s Writers' Workshop. Betty, FP, and Alice are overjoyed and suggest going to Pop’s to celebrate. However, Jellybean doesn’t seem as enthused as the rest of her family.

Cheryl goes to Penelope for help

Cheryl shares with her mother how she seeks to redeem their family in the eyes of the town, starting with reanimating the family maple business, but the Blossom board shut her down out of spite. Penelope replies that the board has always been a "bunch of hateful bitches." She tells Cheryl to make herself scarce and to not go alone, as she’ll need an alibi for what comes next.

That night, Cheryl proposes that she and Toni take a mini-vacation away from both of their families given the stress they’ve both been under.

Archie has trouble writing a letter of leniency for George Augustine, recalling how George was merely covering for his son, Jeffery.

Donna calls Betty for help

Betty receives a call from Donna during the late hours of the night from a phone booth. She reveals that someone is targeting them. First Bret was killed, and now Joan is dead as well. Donna fears that she’s next and tells Betty that she’s going into hiding. Betty insists that Donna is merely being paranoid and that the Auteur is dead before hanging up on Donna and telling her to never call again.

Betty calls around for Joan, who she learns was in fact murdered. She was walking home from school in the woods when the assailant came up from behind and beat her over the head with a rock. With this, Betty and Jughead realize that they have a "preppy murderer" on the loose.

Hermosa has a plan to force their father into retirement

Hermosa has come up with a plan to defeat their father. It's a one-two punch. She’ll deliver the first blow and Veronica will deliver the second. Hiram thinks that acting like a street brawler is what’s keeping him healthy. Hermosa seeks to destroy his delusion. Hermosa recalls Veronica saying that their father called her for help the last time he got beat up. She proposes that they set him up to be attacked and have Veronica denounce his behavior rather than tending to his wounds as before.

George Augustine pleads with Archie

Archie receives an unexpected visit from George Augustine. George reveals that there’s been a slight change in the proceedings. His son took it upon himself to confess to the hit-and-run and now he’s being charged as an adult. Archie’s words could mean the difference between months and years of jail time for Jeffrey. Archie has thought about the hit-and-run constantly. While running his dad over may have been an accident, Archie says that he would’ve never kept driving. George argues that Jeffrey was simply scared, to which Archie replies "and what do you think my dad was?"

Betty and Jughead find another tape from the Auteur sitting on the front porch. They join Jellybean, FP, and Alice in the living room, where they watch the latest tape together. The Auteur seemingly enters their house during the late hours of the night and softly caresses Jellybean’s face with a kitchen knife. Unnerved, Jughead quickly turns off the TV.

Hiram asks Veronica for help

Veronica finds her father inside his study, bruised and beaten after being ambushed outside the mayor’s office. Hiram asks Veronica to get the first aid kit but she refuses. She goes on to compare him to a dog in need of training and how when a dog soils the carpet, the appropriate response is to rub its nose in the carpet. She then asks how many times will he have to be beaten by younger and stronger men for him to learn that it’s time to move on. She advises him to exit gracefully and with dignity rather than dying in the street. Veronica then returns to her room, where Hermosa awaits, having listened to the entire exchange. She replies that maybe Veronica is a Lodge after all. Veronica questions why Hermosa had her men beat their father so badly. Hermosa replies that he needed to be taught a lesson.

Penelope kills the Blossom board

Cheryl returns home from her mini-vacation to find Nana Rose by the fireplace morning the loss of the entire Blossom underworld. Apparently, the Blossom board of trustees poisoned themselves. A suicide note in Cricket’s pocket stated that they wanted to sacrifice themselves to atone for all the ancient Blossom sins. Cheryl realizes this is the work of her mother and calls her out from behind her hidden compartment behind the cupboard. Penelope says to consider this an early graduation present, and with the Blossom board of trustees no more, Cheryl now has full control of all Blossom holdings to do as she pleases.

Betty and Jughead rehash their findings

With Jellybean asleep and their parents calming down in the other room, Betty and Jughead rehash their findings. They suspect that the Auteur has been in their house many times before. And given the supposedly privileged information he had about them and their friends, Betty suspects that the Auteur has also been listening to them, alluding to the fact that Charles may be the Auteur. Not only would he be able to bug their phones, he’d have the resources to kill Joan in the outside world as well as Bret, who was locked up. With that, they decide to return to the house.

Charles admits to killing Joan and Bret

Betty calls Charles and tells him to come over after finding his bug on the phone. Betty says that he got sloppy, to which he replies that he wanted to get caught. He admits to having been listening to their conversations for months but only to protect Betty. Charles then admits to killing Joan and Bret and attempting to kill Donna. It didn’t sit well with him how they committed a heinous crime and got away with it. Jughead joins them and adds that Charles must’ve had Chic kill Bret, and this is what Bret intended to tell them. Betty surmises that Bret and Joan weren't his first kills. Charles also admits that this is true and that he is in fact a serial killer. Charles explains that he only kills people who deserve it, who hurt people he cares for. As Charles approaches, Betty pulls out a gun and tells him that he’s going to confess to all of his crimes, including the videotapes. However, Charles claims that he isn’t the Auteur. While he did kill David for his degenerate behavior and frame him as the Auteur, Charles insists that he isn’t the one videotaping houses and re-creating deaths. However, he has faith that Betty and Jughead will figure it out.

Hermione plans to divorce Hiram and become a Real Housewife of New York

Hiram has given some thought to what Veronica and Hermosa have been saying about retirement and agrees that they have a point. He wonders what him stepping down would look like. Veronica explains that he would take a break while she goes to college and Hermosa handles the business affairs. After graduation, Hiram will take a sabbatical to the Caymans. He presumes that Hermione will be joining him, but she informs him that this is not the case, as she has also decided to make a life change. Three years ago, Andy Cohen asked her to become a Real Housewife of New York. She turned him down to protect Veronica. The only reason she got back with Hiram in the first place was to ensure Veronica’s safety. But now with Veronica going off to college, Hermione intends to divorce Hiram and move back to the city.

Mary cries while watching the re-enactment video

Archie returns home to find his mom watching the re-enactment videotape of the Black Hood holding Archie at gunpoint. Mary cries hysterically, as she had no idea ordeal Archie was subject to. Mary then reveals that she called Uncle Frank after learning that George Augustine came to see him. She pleads with Archie to talk to her, but he insists that he’s fine. Mary wants to send the tape to the sheriff or to Betty and Jughead at least. Instead, Archie breaks the videotape and smashes the TV with a baseball bat.

Betty informs Jughead that she’s told her mom everything and that they’re headed back home now. Both Betty and Jughead sympathize with the pain that Alice must be feeling. She’s had two sons in the form of Chic and Charles, both of whom are criminally insane. Jughead asks Betty how she’s coping. However, she’s still trying to uncover the identity of the Auteur. Jughead then realizes that there’s only one other person who could have had access to such privy information.

Frank consoles Archie

Frank finds Archie taking out his aggression on a punching bag and tries to talk him through the pain. However, Archie isn’t interested in talking to him or hearing him out, as he fled the last time he was in town. Frank explains that he can relate to Archie’s pain. He knows the feeling of hopelessness. They've both watched people die, and Frank understands the guilt that comes with that. Archie pushes Frank and calls him a coward. Frank pushes Archie back and urges Archie to let his aggression out on him. So, Archie proceeds to beat Frank until collapsing into his uncle’s arms as he weeps.

Jellybean is the Auteur

Betty and Jughead confront Jellybean and ask if she’s the Auteur. She admits that she is.

Frank tells Archie that it takes years to heal and that the real reason he came back was to turn himself in and answer for his crimes as a mercenary. He looks to Mary and says that all he needs is good representation.

Jughead reveals to FP that Jellybean is the Auteur

Jughead reveals to FP that Jellybean is the Auteur. The first video from the Auteur was sent out just after Jughead left for Stonewall Prep. She made the videos to keep Jughead in town, as she didn’t want him to leave. She got the idea from Joaquin's brother, Ricky, who introduced her to Blue Velvet Video, and after watching some of their weirder videos, she got the idea to start filming house. Initially, it was just her and Ricky. Then they roped in some of their friends from the community center. And when the simple voyeur videos weren’t making enough impact, she decided to start re-creating these heinous acts, which she and Ricky were able to witness some of through videos at Blue Velvet Video. Jellybean and her friends made all the masks, props, and sets themselves. Jughead remarks that it is actually rather impressive. However, he doesn’t think Jellybean fully understands what she was doing. It was more so a game to her and the other kids. So much so that they broke into Riverdale High to re-create the "Killing Mr. Honey" video after Jellybean snuck onto Jughead’s laptop to read the story he was working on. They even had a secret hide out — the murder cabin in the woods. And lastly, David gave them permission to shoot the prom video inside the scarlet suite. She did all this to keep Jughead in Riverdale. Again, Jughead states that Jellybean doesn’t understand the enormity and darkness in what she did. Jughead and FP then return home, where Betty and Jellybean await. Jellybean apologizes and FP embraces her.

Frank and Archie at Fred's grave

Before leaving with Frank to visit his dad’s grave, where would Archie leave behind flowers and Frank a metal he received from his time at war, Archie hands his mom the letter for the Augustines. Mary assures him that she’ll see to it that the judge reads it. In the letter, Archie states that losing his father was the most difficult ordeal of his life. However, when his dad passed, Archie made a vow to honor his memory. His dad believed in forgiveness and compassion. What happened was a terrible accident, but Archie doesn’t believe Jeffrey's life should be ruined for it, as his dad believed in second chances.

Cast

Starring

Guest Starring

Co-Starring

Soundtrack

  • Mike and the Censations - Victim of Circumstance Pt. 1
  • Grandson x Dreamers - Whole Lotta
    • Scene: Veronica tells Archie to pretend that they're still together.

Trivia

  • This episode was initially titled "Follow The Green" and intended to air during the fourth season as episode 21. However, production was shut down indefinitely due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.[4] [5]
  • The title of the episode is a reference to The Preppie Murder, a 1988 film directed by John Herzfeld. It was based on the murder committed by Robert Chambers, aka the "Preppy Killer".
  • This episode aired the day after the fourth anniversary of the series premiere.

Gallery

Promotional Images

Screencaps

Videos

References

Episode Guide

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